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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  July 11, 2014 1:00am-3:01am EDT

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child advocates who can look after not the -- rounding them up and shipping them back, but the best interest of the child when they arrive here and protecting their rights under u.s. and international law. so, we have a situation where i'm sorry, i have to disagree with this administration. this administration should be saying, we should follow the law. these kids need to be protected. they need to have hhs protect them. and care for them and give them every meaningful right to apply for asylum. now, the problem is, hhs doesn't have the money to do it. they should do it but they don't have the money to do that. that's what this supplemental is about. it's to allow hhs to follow along which they aren't right now. but they can't. they can't follow along because
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they don't have the money to do it. they can't transfer them in 72 hours, my fellow senators, because they don't have the money to do it. so that's why this supplemental, madam chair, as you said, is so critical. we can't hold ourselves up as a paradigm of human rights and then say round them up and shake-up the-- and ship them ba. should they say that to the syrians that are escape something round them up and ship them back? we're better than that. i have to disbrae with my friend from south carolina. we're not being overrun by these kids. we're a country of 300 million people. we're talking about, what, 50,000, 90,000 at the most? that's overrunning america?
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nonsense. we can deal with this. now, let anyone think, we got to work with those other countries. we have to do things in those other countries. it's a complex issue. as some of you have state. not going to be solved overnight. it's not going to be sofld with a few military people. but in the meantime, the single, most important thing is to take care of these kids. to make sure they're save, they're house and shelter and clothes and fed and they have legal protections and they can apply for asylum. meaningfully, not with the border patrol. not as soon as they come across the border. i read your testimony. but after they've had due process. and where hhs can take them in and provide the kind of shelter and support that they need. after that, we can talk about returning them.
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until they've had adequate advo their side and let them know what their legal rights are in this country -- i hate to be so emotional about it. when i hear this coming from the administration, ship them back, do it as soon as possible. but they're in fleeing violence and drugs and gangs. now, they're fleeing violence and drugs and gangs and all kinds of things like that, yes. >> i disagree with my 23re7bd from south carolina. reinforcing bad habits with bad habits. i never considered a bad habit for any human being to leave a bad situation where they're being killed, beat up, sexually violated, denied their basic human rights. denied the opportunity to live a live and they want to seek it
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some place else? and that's not a bad habit. that's in the human spirit. that i thought we'd like to extoll in this country. so i guess i've run out of time and i've used up my time. so therefore, i guess i don't have a question. but i hope i made my point. >> senator, you can also submit questions for the record. thank you for your statement. >> senator shelby? >> mr. secretary, i've been told that there's currently 162,000 children at the homeland security ranch. is that number about right or wrong? in other words, in this country, that have come in over the years that still pending? >> i see. i don't know whether that number is accurate. >> can you furnish the number for the record, check it out?
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>> yes. >> it's a lot of children, isn't it? >> 162,000 people, in my book, is a lot of people. keep in mind of that population, assuming that number is accurate, of that population, a lot of them may have turned 18 by now. >> 18. and you've only sent home, what, an average is it 1800, period, or about 1800 a year. >> about 1800 a year. >> that you adjudicate and sent home? >> yae. up until this recent situation, yes. >> what if, suppose at the rate they're going, 52,000 people, children, were detained, came in and were apprehended as you call it, in the country, if this number continues to grow, there could be hundreds of thousands of children coming here, could it not?
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>> which is -- yes, which is why we believe we fwhoobelieve we no add resources to the process of repatriation and return for uac's while preserving the ability to make a claim for humanitarian relief. >> along the border with texas, rio grande, mainly, area, do they just walk across the border? is the border unprotected? is it no fence there? anything? how do they do? or do they just come up and say, take me into custody? whatever. >> the rio grande valley sector is bordered by the rio grande river. and it's a windy river that -- >> 360 miles long or something? >> and they swim across. they walk across. and it's -- if you look at a map that the border patrol will show you it's all tending to concentrate in one particular
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area. >> so even if we gave the money that's been requested here, $3.7 million, it doesn't solve the problem in any way? it helps you deal with the current problem but it doesn't solve the problem, does it? >> it will -- well, in my judgment it will definitely stem the tide if we provide this funding. >> of the people senator graham asked the question, and i didn't hear a clear answer to it. maybe you don't know. but these children are most of them that are trying to come to this country, do they have parents or uncles or aunts in this country already? legal or illegal? do you know? >> yes. when we place the children, the majority of the children are placed with relatives. >> so they know who their
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relatives are? where they are and so forth? >> the children, in some cases know. in other cases, as part of the hhs process, we learn and make that determination through questions and an interview process in terms of trying to understand the child. >> now, if people are here legally, they come as immigrants legally, and they're children are where they came from, the country of origin, can't they go through the legal process and brng their children to this country in the legal process for that? >> i would defer to my colleague for justice on the process. >> it depends on the current studies if they're here illegally, senator. >> if they're here legally and they wanted to bring their children that are, si, in central america somewhere. >> there is one category of the lawful permanent residence who can petition for they're family
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members. that would be the only category that is currently available, i believe, for them to bring their relatives over. >> well, i know money is a humanitarian problem but it's an immigration problem, a big one, for this country. thank you, madam chair. >> that congress clouds the number of senator that this wanted to ask questions. i think in has been an excellent hearing. the fact that 25 senators came from this committee to participate and the other five had commitments for which they'll submit questions. we also want to thank the witnesses for their straight-forward, candid commentary but also, for the work that they do every day. in addition to dealing with this situation, they also have other
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pretty significant responsibilities and we know that they're working 36 hour days and ten-day work weeks. and i think it's pretty impressive. and, also, to the men and women who work under those agencies, it's pretty impressive. when you meet the border patrol agents and, also, the response of our particularly our vocal faith-based organizations. to me it was very heartening and touching to see the way the baptist child welfare agency was running the facility. it was a-plus in terms of any standard of child welfare. but what was particularly interesting to me was the charities in oklahoma had come to lackland to work with the baptists with to learn what was the most effective way to deal with this. so i think we're doing all right. the question is -- what does it really -- what are we going to do? the urgent supplemental that
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meets the needs of today. every single colleague has said we need to look at the long-range implications of this. some talk about a more military intervention strategy. some talk about changing the law on refugees. these are not necessarily my personal direction, because when you're talking to the children you find out why would a mother making minimum wage somewhere, scrape together $3,000? you can imagine what it took to save that money, to send it to essentially, a scoundrel, to bring her daughter or her son across the border. and to know the h treacherous, dangerous journey that they're going to do? it will only risk that. the dangers is so severe. we all heard these stories that
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are so we don't even want to repeat some of them in public. because of their. -- it's because in guatemala, honduras and el salvador, the violence is so bad that the violence of the journey, the violence of the journey is less. and the risk that they will take. and then, to say we're going to send them back, send them back to what? the gang that tried to recruit a little girl and threatened the family? if the two girls, two young girls didn't join the gang, they would be killed? mute la mutilated or turned into the something called "queens." i won't even talk about what that means. i couldn't bring myself to describe it. what are we going to send them back to? it's not like juan valdez is
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going to greet them at the airport with roses. i think we need a real strategy to know why they left. i've said repeatedly, and i will say this again. i have felt over the last decade we have fought four wars. one in afghanistan. because of an attack on us. we fought one on iraq that members voted for. i did not. then we fought the cyberwar which continues to be a significant threat. and i don't minimum mieds the threat of terrorism. and then i talked about the war at our border. but i was worried about drug dealers. i wasn't worried about children. but the children are coming because of tdrug dealers so we can talk about root cause and poverty. i don't minimize that but we have to really, now, i think we have to really focus on our hemisphere. i believe that we've had three decades of uneven policy in terms of looking at our own hemisphere and in central america. senator harkin knows about eight
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and senator shelby, we come from a background that heard about the nuns that were assaulted. the assassination of oscar romero. war after war with brutality after brutality and then just when we're ready to deal with it some other thing turns our head and we're off running with flight jackets visiting some new issue. so i think we need to, in addition to all of the other wars we have to fight, bring to a close swrur jury, you know as mr. homeland security, there's a lot of threats to this country. i believe that the threats of the children, the children are not threats. the children are coming because of the threat to the children. and i think we need to meet the urgent needs here. we have to then really focus on our hemisphere. and have a focused way that deals with the crime. deals with the corruption. deals with exactly where a
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mother will risk sending her daughter on a perilous journey because it's less violent than what she would find staying home with her grandmother. we have a lot of work to do. the record will be opened for two weeks. i invite any nonprofit to submit testimony. we'll continue our discussion. the committee stands in recess until the full committee will be marking up on next thursday, the defense appropriations. with the modification that if we can get other things done this week, i'm sure going to do it.
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>> on the next washington journal, we talk about the criminal justice is him with former new york city police commissioner bernard kerik, . "washington journal on c-span everyday. you can also join the conversation on facebook or twitter. several live evidence tomorrow. a task force will examine what is being called the over criminalization of the criminal justice system.
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that is on c-span 3 at 9:00 eastern. 2, the housean energy and commerce subcommittee on health looks at the role of patients in drug development. later, vice president biden expected to talk to the national governors association about state and federal partnerships at 2:00 p.m. eastern. >> [indiscernible] [applause] i would remind you that extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice. [applause]
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>> thank you. thank you. thank you. also that remind you moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue. [applause] >> senator goldwater's acceptance speech at the 1964 republican national convention this weekend on american history tv, sunday at 4:00 p.m. eastern
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on c-span 3. the senate armed services committee held a confirmation hearing for three senior military commanders including the heads of the northern command, the afghanistan security force and special operations command. this is two and a half hours. [gavel]
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[gavel] >> the morning, everybody. the committee meets today to consider the nominations of admiral william gordon to the ofthern command, commander north american aerospace defense command.
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john campbell to the international security commitment force, commander of united states forces afghanistan. hotelnant general joseph to be commander u.s. special operations command. welcome to all of you and to each of you. we thank you for your many years of great service to our nation, for your willingness to continue to serve in these positions of huge responsibility. we thank you and your family members. our senior military officers are asked to undertake long hours, and thence workloads. we know as you do that your success in these roles would not be possible without the support of your family's. please feel free to introduce those members who are with you today, when it comes to be your turn.
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all three nominees have impressive records of service and are well qualified for the positions to which they have been nominated. theral gordon has been commander of the u.s. fleet forces command. the director of the joint staff of the pentagon, and the commander of u.s. naval central command. campbell has been the vice chief of staff of the army, deputy chief of staff of the army, and commander of the 101st airborne division in afghanistan. has been commander of the joint special operations command, deputy commander of the joint ied defeat organization and chief of staff of the special operations command. our nominees will assume some of the most demanding positions in our military. 'smiral gortney
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responsibilities will include defense of the homeland, supporting civil authorities in the face of natural and man-made disasters. admiral campbell will be the commander of norad, which has the mission of providing aerospace control and maritime warning for north america. general campbell will assume his position at a time of significant transition in afghanistan. he will be tasked with implementing the withdrawal of u.s. combat troops by the end of the year while simultaneously supporting counterterrorism operations and sustaining the mission. to train, advise and assist the afghan security forces as they assume responsibility for their nation's security. the current political uncertainty in afghanistan stemming from the allegations of election fraud threatens to
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derail significant gains made throughout the country. the two presidential candidates in afghanistan have stated publicly that a comprehensive audit of the election results is needed. they both agree on that. they will abide by the results of such an audit. regardless whether the candidates agree on the details of the audit process, it is the duty of the afghan election commissions to move forward to identify and eliminate fraudulent ballots so they can announce a credible election result. general kamel, i would appreciate hearing your views on the ongoing political events and what impact they could have on the security situation in afghanistan. votel will assume the helm of a force that has sustained a high operational tempo for nearly 13 years of war.
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as we draw down our forces in afghanistan, we will need to give particular attention to the and theirecial forces continued ability to carry out terror terrorism -- counterterrorism in afghanistan. we look forward to hearing how you will address these challenges while ensuring that men and women of the special operations community are not shouldering an undue burden. we want to thank our nominees again for being with us, for your great service to our nation. we look forward to your confirmation. i now call on senator inhofe. >> thank you, chairman. thank all three of you for the time you gave me and the rest of us up here. campbell, you are going to be tasked overseeing the mission in afghanistan. general dunford has done a great
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job. a serious thing we are dealing with over there. the recent presidential elections have been marred by allegations of widespread voter fraud. let me find the right one, the province here -- anyway, they went from 17,000 votes that were cast in the first election and it jumped to 170,000 in the runoff. keeping in mind that ghani's force is greater in the rural areas, during the last election -- this is unprecedented. everyone up here has gone through elections. we don't remember a time where you have a larger percentage of turnout in a rural area than an urban area. yet it was 3-1. you know that is wrong. you have voter fraud and i am concerned about the perception
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of the people in afghanistan if this isn't cleared out. we are going to be pushing hard to get an audit. i am sure you agree with that. i am also troubled by the plan to draw down forces based on an arbitrary timeline instead of the best advice of military commanders. the president tried the same policy in iraq and i feel we are hopefully not doomed to make the same estate again. contrary to the claims of some that i al qaeda are on the run, they are not. they control more territory than ever before. iraq and syria have become the largest terrorist havens in the world and are serving as a breeding ground for the next generation of jihadists. it is only a matter of time before the foreigners who traveled to join the fight will return back home to places like africa battle hardened and ready to perform. , you will beey
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accountable for one of the most solemn responsibilities of our government, defending the homeland. that is what most people are concerned with and that is what has got to be the top priority. i am north korea continues to develop delivery systems for its nuclear weapons arsenal and public intelligence reports assess that iran could have the means to deliver a nuclear weapon by 2015. our intelligence said that they would have the ability to produce a weapon and a delivery system by 2015.
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well, that is on us now. look forward to hearing from the nominees and resolving these difficult problems. >> thank you very much, senator inhofe. >> good morning, mr. chairman. it is a distinct honor and privilege to appear before you today. i would like to thank the president for nominating me and pagelsecretary chairman for the trust they have faced to me. be mannered, i would of the northern aerospace command. i would like to thank the armed services committee for their work and their support for our family. i am joined by my wife and with your permission, i would like to introduce her. we have known each other since
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high school and this past summer we celebrated our 34th anniversary. these other very stitches that hold the cloth of our nation together. the dedication is remarkable and i would not be here today without her. mr. chairman, my good friend has with his com teams thinking and he has said the gold standard for combat and command leadership. make two simple but important points before receiving your questions. first, working hand in hand with congress, there is no greater responsibility than to defend the nation that we call home. the commander is charged with being our last line of defense and providing support to local state levels. id these as a sacred trust and that if confirmed i will safely and passionately execute them.
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cooperation is paramount to the mission. i spent my career building coalitions to solve the problems that face us all. this includes engaging with our mexico,iends in canada, and the bahamas. i will work closely with the combat and commanders, the surface sheets, our citizen soldiers, the governors of our and thend our teammates department of homeland security. if confirmed, i look forward to thisng with members of committee to identify and take action on the task required to defend our homeland. thank you for this opportunity and thank you, mr. chairman and ranking member in half, the members of the committee, and the staff for the work you do to provide our men and women with what they need to do our nations bidding.
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>> thank you, sir. good morning. thank you for the opportunity to before you. i appreciate your support and your commitment to our servicemembers. i am honored and humbled that the president has nominated me to command the assistance force and u.s. forces in afghanistan. i would like to thank chairman dempsey and secretary hegel. joent to knowledge general dunford for the work is done over the last year and a half and his personal sacrifice for the nation's efforts in afghanistan. i would like to thank his wife who has been a true inspiration. i must acknowledge my wife, she is recovering from knee surgery. is actually at walter reed. i want to thank her for the straight and sacrifice, for being a great mom for our two children and for the tireless advocacy. a measurable effect
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on so many of our soldiers and their families also our nation has been at work for nearly 13 years. this has defined much of my career and i'm honored to be considered to lead during the next phase. i'd like to afghanistan while i commanded the first gate of the 82nd airborne division. i returned to afghanistan in command of the 101st airborne division. troopers000 u.s. ally and 14 provinces. i saw incredible sacrifice of our soldiers and families. i also had hundreds of euros that paid the ultimate sacrifice under my command. these warriors and all those who deployed to afghanistan have had enormous impact by bringing hope to the people of that nation. and by denying al qaeda their favorite sanctuary and i'm committed to completing this mission. draw down our forces,
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there will be many challenges but i have confidence in the strength of the forces. they have succeeded in securing the recent electionand i'm confident in their ability to remain firm through the transfer of power. i also have faith in the strength of the coalition that has held together over this long conflict. will proudly i lead our servicemen and women in afghanistan. i thank you for your steadfast and generous support, supporting our men and women of the u.s. military. i await ind, afghanistan. >> numbers of committee, thank you for the opportunity to do -- to appear before you today regarding my nomination.
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i'm honored to be included on a panel of senior officers with whom i've had a long professional acquaintance and who i deeply respect. i am pleased that my wife was able to be here with me today. she and the other spouses present represent decades of service caring for our members and their families. she has been a constant source of inspiration and support to haveand i could not imagined making this journey without her. i'm deeply honored to be considered for this position. i believe that special operations forces provide a vital function within the department of defense, providing our leadership with unique solutions to challenging problems. if confirmed, i look forward to working with this committee to address the needs and requirements of our special operations forces, ensuring that they remain the best in the world. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you very much.
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i last the standard questions that we ask of our which, first, if you adhere to applicable laws and regulations governing conflicts of interest. when asked to give your personal views, even if they differ from the ? >> wetration in power do. >> have you assumed any duties or undertaking any actions which would appear to resume the outcome of the confirmation process. we you ensure that your staff complies with deadlines established for requested communications including questions for the record and hearings. will you cooperate and provide witnesses and reefers in response to congressional requests? >> yes stop >> will those witnesses be protected from
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reprisals? >> they will. >> they will. to testify before this committee? >> yes, sir. >> do you agreed to give documents when requested by a duly constituted committee or to consult with the committee regarding the basis for any good-faith delay or denial. ok, let's have a seven minute first round. , we can get to the second round if necessary. we have had a lot of failures and a lot of successes and as system. my question is, do you believe a is important to follow
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flight before you and conduct operational, realistic testing of the ground-based missile defense system including the kill vehicle to provide confidence that it will work as intended? you do i believe that this before you deploy. but few agree that our highest priority is to further improve the capability of the system by improving its sensor and discrimination capability? >> yes, sir. it is critical that we improve that which we have to make sure the vehicle is as effective as possible and our ability to discriminate the threats that are coming to the homeland. after that, it is the expansion of our capacity. i agree with the dirt priority -- the third priority which is to look at future technologies. >> thank you.
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i understand the department of health and human services is now seeking substantially increased dod support for our temporary housing needs at the southern border because of the influx of the young people. i hope that there can be a positive response to the requests of the department of health and human services. of course, north com needs to have the ability to provide that increased support. do you believe that they have devoted to provide the increase , via theequested department of health and human services? >> yes, sir. it's my understanding we have help.ovide all of the >> there is a new requested. there is a new request from health and human services. >> i've not heard about the
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latest increase. we can go up a bit from that. >> general campbell, you have given us your assessment and performance of afghan national security forces. ongoing and during fighting season and in recent elections. bit?ou expand on that a >> absolutely. the last time i was in afghanistan was in april but i have kept in contact with the other commanders on the ground. i have talked to him about the afghan security forces. everything i've seen, read, heard, the afghan security forces have continued to progress in all of their capabilities as evidenced by the recent election where the coalition forces provide fertile support and the afghans took on security. they brought a sense of right
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for them to do this and i think they continue to progress. so far, as a new plan will show, we will move off of the tactical and move up to the core level. that shows that the campaign has been working. the difference when i left was very very significant. answer to, in your the questions, you said that you support the president's decision on the size of the u.s. troop resins in afghanistan during the next two years, is that correct? >> i support the numbers. it shows that we continue to have a presence in afghanistan. i think that is good. support the pace of reductions with an understanding that we should continue to validate the assumptions and assess the conditions on the ground.
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to understand that you will recommend changes in the pace of the drawdown if you find in your best military judgment at the pace should be modified. what i was a true assessment once again on the ground on how the mission is going. >> and if you determine in your best judgment that the pace should be changed and that the date should be changed, you would make that recommendation? >> i would provide my best military advice. >> even if it differs from the current pace? meif that is what you expect to do, absolutely. >> after 2016, the u.s. military presence in afghanistan is planned to be a normal embassy base. it is also been reported that the size of the future office of security operation in
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afghanistan can be as large as a thousand personnel will stop the question relates to the plans for post-2016. if at any point in your military judgment, circumstances change or assumptions underlying the post 2016 plan don't prove valid, will you also list those above you in the chain of command no? >> absolutely, sir. >>, general, there's going to be a consolidation of basing locations inside of afghanistan. i want to get your view as to how that consolidation is going to impact the ability of assault teams, airborne to reach remote where al qaeda has
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sought safe haven. have been following the plans with general stanford and his staff and we have adequate locations at this time to continue to do the operations, counterterrorism, and hardship operations that we need to continue to apply the pressure against the networks that we are dealing with. >> can you give us your understanding of the progress in training the special operations? achievingmeline for their operational capability? >> my command has been responsible for training a portion of the special operations forces and i assess that we are moving very quickly and effectively to make capable partners on the battlefield. not only their ability to execute operations but more
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importantly, the ability of their leaders to direct operations and supervise execution. i think we are making very good progress. the special operations have been hugely impressed by their ability to conduct operations and to be with their afghan countrymen and work for very closely with them. rightss we are on the path with this. >> thank you, senator. about whiche and -- ince it was it went from 7002 170 thousand. that is absurd. that cannot happen. i don't think we
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can't find any place where the turnout is greater in the rural areas than in the urban areas. strength out where the is in the rural areas and it was 3-1 in the urban areas and we know that it's not true. if there are so many of these, i a sure that the afghan from different ethnic groups have the same concern as i do. we pushed really hard to get an audit, a genuine audit, one that has oversight from outside groups. ifould ask you first of all you think that is a good idea. but what happened if the people do not understand and appreciate this as a legitimate election, what would happen in your opinion? >> as far as you know, this is really the runoff. they had the first election in april.
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it is absolute critical that the afghan people and the rest of the world see this as a viable, transparent election process. that you think they see it way? >> both have said there's been some corruption and they're working hard to come together to find this audit. the difference is the number of holy stations, whether it is 2000 or 6000. >> general, you and i talked about africana. we remember when the continent of africa was in three different commands. the problem is that they don't have their own resources. in the opening statement, i commented that a lot of people are into this war going on in afghanistan and elsewhere. as hardenedturn fighters. does this concern you? without the resources there, you and i talked about --
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>> certainly it does concern me, as we discussed yesterday. i think what we can do, while we continue to prioritize our precious resources that are using a variety of locations, is to continue to build the relationships on the ground that will allow us to assist our partners where we can to provide information, to share information with them, to better enable them to deal with the challenges of returning fighters . >> you mentioned isr and rodriguez. they only have the capability to that theyf the needs have in the continent. do you agree with that? >> i have, senator. senator rodriguez and i talked frequently. we definitely need more. >> are you prepared to try to
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come and express that? >> if confirmed, i look forward to addressing that. >> that sounds good. the chairman talked about the program and the fact that we need to have more update, modernization, which we have been talking about for a long time. we actually put additional funding in for that purpose but that is not merely adequate. in terms of the resources that will be available, where do you think we are on that program and do you think we are making significant investments -- andicient maintenance reliability of the system? >> yes, sir. i think the priorities are correct. the proper in maintenance or modernization of is the number-
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one requirement. the second one, investment after that would be to improve the vehicle itself and then improvement to the sensors that would allow us to better discriminate the threat coming to the homeland. >> as you go back to 2008, our funding has declined from $2 billion to about half that now. does that concern you? >> yes, that does concern me. once again, the first verity should be the necessary investments into the maintenance in the facilities we have. >> there is a big difference of opinion here among just the members up here, that is concerning the m i-17. we have got several and i've looked into it and i agree that the afghans lack the capacity in both the personnel and numbers come expertise to operate and maintain the existing special.
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if we were to change, what position would we be in in terms of our training, if we were to drop in new vehicles and discard that particular program? this as were to change a primary lift platform, we would be several years behind. we would need a whole new training program. >> i have a real hard time thinking about it as something, it is there now, they are trained now, and i notice more popular to say, let's go into another group of vehicles. but, i think it is very significant, you feel that we could be years behind. >> i've talked to general dunford on the ground. with7 provides the afghans the capability to stretch, to get out, to the hinterland, to go after the insurgents and it
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provides a coalition force the outer ring of security. i know that general dunford is concerned about the loss of the m i-17 and what it does to the ability of the afghans to get out and conduct all of their missions. >> i appreciated very much and i hope that members of the committee heard this loud and clear. >> thank you for your distinguished service to the nation and to the men and women you lead. we are courtney, constantly under cyber attack. today's headline is that the chinese are hacking into the office of personnel management. are we doing the exercises, the wargaming on a regular basis to assure that you can respond to these threats?
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>> yes, sir. ,esponsibility is to make sure to assure that our systems, our defense systems are operable, to the assurance that we can do the command and control and the facilities are protected, they are able to defend themselves. we work closely with the services to make sure that happens. the second responsibility if confirmed as to respond to the physical responses to a cyber attack, to the civilian pieces and we exercise that throughout the year under our defense of the civil authorities and how well we can respond. >> a lot of the target that list wouldime on the not be military facilities, they would be financial institutions, public utilities, transit systems and have you coordinated , at the planning level, not an operational level, of how you
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might defend against these? >> those would be to the power rail,to the water, to the all of that. we are responsible for responding to the physical consequences of that and that is very similar to the defense support to the civil authorities for earthquake, things of those natures. >> who was responsible for the act did defense of these facilities or is anybody responsible? infrastructure, to be honest, it is homeland security that has that responsibility. it is my professional opinion that we are little bit behind. .e are behind in our ability >> do you have ordination with homeland security? if they are the ones responsible, there should be a joint planning effort, not just imris pots but in deterrents or prevention. security is our closest
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partner and our response is there but i do not know if we have a formal coordinating. general campbell, your experience on the ground in afghanistan is going to be critical. there are some a different aspects of the issue. one i would like to get your opinion on, they have taken significant offensive operations in what was formally referred to as the tribal areas. they will play a key role in anything that happens there. can you give your impression of where they're headed and how you might work with them? >> you're right, you cannot really talk pakistan unless you talk afghanistan as well. you have not only the coalition but also the building between afghanistan and pakistan. inan only's the from my time 2011. i know that that gets letter that the senior levels.
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at the tactical levels. the kernels, the brigadier general's, they worked daily. i would visit pakistan once a quarter. i know general dunford and the senior leadership continues to work those relationships and that will be really key not only for the border but also for the counterterrorism. special operations command has been operating flat out for more than a decade now and as we reset our forces, our conventional forces, you will still operate at mark speed. might be framed. what is your impression of the operational capability, the effect of these operations on your force? >> thanks for the question. i agree with the assessment. i do think that the force has
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been very operationally active. i think we continue to be very very effective in the operations that we continue to asked to perform. addedy to this has been moment cravens focus on ensuring that we do address the pressure on our force and provide them the mechanisms that allow them to continue to serve their country but also to take care of the needs that are generated by years of combat and years of service overseas. >> and one other aspect of this is a rough dichotomy. missions andert then there are traditional training missions that the special operations performs. some of those missions, we shift to conventional forces or is that a way to sort of lesson the pressure from your forces? >> i think that is an option for us. i look forward to working with
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the services, particularly the army, who i know is developing regional forces. we would be great partners in developing our partners across the globe. >> if i had a final question, we have a new theater of how well prepared are we? for example, i don't think we have a heavy eyes breaker in the navy and i don't think we have any plans to build one. >> the arctic is a wilderness and in order to operate there, we have to communicate, navigate and tean ourselves and operate our ships and aircraft up there. that's going to require some significant investments for the department. in order to do that, we need to figure out when is the time we need to put all those capabilities in place and palm them appropriately. but we do not have an ice
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breaker. and the coast guard only has one. it requires study. it's president's priorityty. it's north come. it's tasked mission for north come. and so north com and my current job working with on nave, we're working heavily to figure out those time lines. >> thank you. >> senator sessions. >> thank you chairman. and i thank all of you for your service to the country. we have the finest military in the history of the world in my opinion. it's exceedingly well trained, very well led. i think our modern leaders are more engaged with their troops, more leading from the front, more atuned to what is happening than ever before and we've gone through some very tough times and maintained cohesiveness and morale in a way that would be
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difficult to have expected actually considering the deployments that have been imposed on our soldiers. i'm real proud of them. i would thank senator levin for his comments and questions, general campbell to you about your duty. as we understand it in this republic, to tell the truth to the congress and to your supports as you see it. and history would indicate i think that leaders on the battlefield are ignored at great pearl. so you are going to have to make some recommendations in the months to come concerning reduction in force policies that are going to be challenging and we appreciate your commitment to do that. and i would ask the other two, would you also answer in the
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affirmative as general campbell did to senator levin's questions? >> absolutely, sir. >> yes, senator. the defense department made up its mind early, was rock solid on it, refused to listen to any other suggestions about it and now we've had russia invading crimea. so i personally am not very pleased with that decision. yesterday. out it it may be too late to reverse that decision but that's my two ents worth about that issue. general, you were asked about how healthy your force is.
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is it about 67,000 now? >> senator, that's about right and with growing to about 69,000, plus some. >> and we know we are going to be drawing down varying different estimations of our total force. is it your opinion that in a restructured force as a result of budget stigses and other that we are more or less? >> i think the level that we are going to be at is appropriate for the task that we are being asked to perform on behalf of tall geographic and other commanders out there that we support. so i think staying at the level
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that we are is the right answer. >> thank you. recent al, i understand task in the -- test in the pacific of our missile defense system was very successful involving some complexities and it was still effective. what can you tell us about that? >> i have limited in my detail in my capacity to know it. t was a successful test.
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>> be your decision? >> that's correct sir. >> if we have an incoming missile you would make the decision to launch. >> yes, sir. >> and how do you plan to ensure that that system works well and that quick decisions can be made 24 hours a day? you gave me indication yesterday but i thought it would be good to share that. >> you test and exercise what is important, sir. and you need to test and exercise that entire weapon system, all the muscles making that an effective engagement, you need to test and exercise it
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continuously. the test is the control of that facility because the shot window is so narrow from detection to when the decision has to be made. if you don't exercise everybody in that chain of command routinely you don't have confidence to make that decision in time. >> i think you are exactly right. and we certainly invested a tremendous amount in that system and we don't need to have a glitch in the management of it that would neutralize its value. >> general campbell, this is going to be such a challenge. thank you for your continued service. i am very pleased that you have extensive knowledge of afghanistan and i believe you will be in a position to be most effective. senator mccain predicted in 2011 openly and directly that we pull t so rapidly in iraq as we ended up doing that there would
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be grim consequences. his grim predictions unfortunately have been proven true. we'll be watching and remembering the soldiers you've led and the soldiers that have been wounded and the soldiers that lost their lives in afghanistan. we've reached the point i believe that country can be successful but it's fragile. can you give us your best judgment of what the prospects are for establishing a decent government there that is not a hostile to the united states? >> thank you for the question. i think the key point is we will have a continued presence in afghanistan for the next couple of years. i look forward to getting over there and making my own assessment on the ground. there are two missions we are working now as we move to 2015 on the training, advice and assist at the higher level and of course a counter terrorism mission. i'll continue to work hard on
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those two missions. i'll give you my best military advice on that. we continue to work on gaps that the team over there has identified they will continue to work. there has been great progress by the afghanistan security forces. >> our mission is not to get to zero troops at a certain date. our mission is to what we've committed to and what we've invested in blood and resources is a successful outcome. and i hope that we don't lose sight of that. thank you. >> thank you, sir. >> senator cain. >> thank you mr. chairman and thank you to the witnesses and your families for your service. general campbell, i am on the foreign relations committee and subchaired a meeting on afghanistan a few months ago and general allen said and this was a surprising bit of testimony that he viewed corruption as more of a threat to the future of afghanistan than terrorism.
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terrorism and the taliban are certainly threats but he viewed corruption as a more significant threat. i filed that away in the back of my head. as i've watched what has played out in terms of the presidential elections i found it to be an interesting observation. the taliban threatened to disrupt the elections. they weren't able to do it. i give credit for protecting the physical security of the lebses. but the elections have been threatened by allegations of corruption of the process by political leaders potentially the out going administration. am i correct in my view that the n.s.f. did a pretty good job in protecting the physical integrity of these elections despite the taliban's pledge to disrupt them? >> thank you for the question. they protected all the polling sights and based on the number of incidents that i read about,
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they did an excellent job. so i think they are profwressing from where they were and where they continue to go continues to get better and that's a great new story. but it's because of the great men and women of the coalition being side by side with them to help them through the last 13 years of doing that. it's not by happenstance. it's because of the great work by men and women and they continue to work that. you are right, sir. >> it's important for the members of this committee to recognize the challenges going forward there are not simply military challenges. if they can protect the integrity of the elections but still called into question because of political corruption. there are other tools wre need to explore if we want to make sure the progress we've been a part of continues. i wish you well in that and look forward to working with you in that capacity. >> general, you and i talked a
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bit the other day. i'm concerned about the force and the fraying of the force after the incredible amount of work that's been done turnover last 13 years. aid veteran's round table where a widow whose husband was a special forces veteran who committed suicide in march talked about the stress on him and on their family. if you could share more about you are so familiar with these folks but how as the head of this command you intend to deal with those issues both for people who are ack tiff and once people separate from special forces. i know that you have a continuing commitment to them. >> thank you, senator. certainly i do think the pressure that has been put on the force is not excuse toif our special operations force. it has affected all of our forces. that said i think there are some things we ask our special
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operators to do, the secrecy with which they operate that do not allow them the normal opportunities to talk about things after wards so i think we do have to address that aspect of it when it comes to our special operations forces and families and make sure we provide those outlets for them. as we talked about the other day, the special operation command does have the care coalition which is designed to take care of our members that are wounded physically or otherwise in these situations. and i think that is a great way to continue to take care of folks while they are in the service and beyond. i think continuing to look at veteran organizations outside of the military is also a great partnership that we need to have in place. i am familiar with some organizations of retired military people and just concerned americans out in the
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communities who are very willing to work with and reach out to our veterans across the country to ensure they and their families are well taken care of. if confirmed, i look forward to continuing to strengthen those relationships and ensure our members on active service and beyond active service are continue to get the care that they are required. >> thank you. >> and let us know the strategies that we can also help you as we pursue that important goal. one more comment for you. i want to offer my congratulations. senator king and i traveled through the middle east in february and in many of the nations where we were we heard about the value of the u.s. special forces in training special forces in other nations. i imagine in the context of the defense budget, the training that our special forces do with other nation's special forces has to be a drop in the bucket. ut butt the value is
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insignificant. that's an important part of your mission as well. >> i attribute that to our people. they are our most precious and important resource. and when we allow them to get out and do their jobs they amaze us and do fantastic things. >> admiral, in your testimony today in your written testimony as well you talked about the mission of north com in terms of protecting the homeland and it's becoming clear just reading the headlines everyday that one of the most important borders in the protection of homeland is the border between mexico and the central american neighbors whose children are fleing violence and gangs and trying to come to the united states. talk a little bit about the u.s. mexico military relationship and how that relationship can potentially deal with some of the border issues on mexico's southern border.
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? >> in my current capacity i'm the component to general scake by. just had admiral in the headquarters just a couple of days ago. the mill to mill relationship with the navy and army is much better. it's a strong and growing relationship thanks to the leading edges of both the admiral and general have had. it's important that it's day-to-day. it's the small, it's the same confidence that you just mentioned with the special forces that will pay us long term dividends. moving at the pace they are able to go at, doing the things that they find important. i feel that we're in a very good direction and a positive trend. >> do they view that border on their south as significantly a challenge as we do? >> in our discussions they see
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the border to the south as the bigger issue. that is where their threat is coming from causing the disruption in their society so they are very focused to the south. that means the relationship between north com and south com has to be strong so there is no seam that can be used against us, that we work together with all those nations to counter those shared threats. >> thank you. >> thanks mr. chairman and gentlemen thank you for your continued great service. and to your families thanks for sharing your husbands with us. we know this is a family obligation. so we appreciate very much your allowing us to have their leadership. >> general campbell, i'll tell you what i told lloyd austin as he was preparing to go into iraq to mike sure we closed it down the right way.
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that was the most dangerous command of all the commands because as you pull out, our troops becomeless in number and the situation becomes more dangerous. i think you are going to have that same situation but i think you are the right person to meet that challenge. we look forward to your continued leadership in that role. something took place over there recently that gives me a little bit of concern and that is the release of about a dozen .ndividuals from the prison of those dozen were pakistanis. they were returned to their home countries. can you tell us about the release of those detain knees. core released hard combatant enemymies of the united states? >> i don't have details on which
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individuals were released. over time we have to return back and out of afghanistan. i don't have details on those ten. we've been working with all different countries with state department and with the country of afghanistan to make sure when we do release individuals there are mitigating effects to make sure they can't impact the fight again. >> there are 38 non-afghans still at that prison all of which are pretty hard core enemy combatants. have you been briefed on plans to release the other 38? >> i know the number 38. i know there is a figure within that 38 that have been determined to be hard core. i don't know the plan on how we will release them. but if confirmed i will make sure i'm tied into that process. that is is a whole government operation that will take place. but i don't have the details on that at this time.
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>> as you prepare to go to afghanistan to assume this command, you are going in at a time we are going to have a new president. the political winds are shifting somewhat. can you give us your analysis of the political situation now as we prepare to conclude this election and have a new president sworn in? >> i can tell you i think both of the candidates, whoever becomes the president indicated they want a long term relationship with the coalition and with the united states in particular. so that's very encouraging and they understand the importance of how important afghanistan is and that part of the world and the impact of showing they have a political process to make sure that is very transparent. i think everything i see is good news in that we're on a good road. but we have to get through this target and get through the election and identify the president and show that not only the people of afghanistan but
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the people of the world that afghanistan has gotten through this piece and want to be part of the international community here for a stable, secure and democratic afghanistan as we go forward. i'm looking forward to getting over there and i think we're on a positive path right now. >> one reason i feel you're up to the challenge is your statement earlier and i know this has been your commitment to assess the situation on the ground and to monitor that as we move along towards the end of 2016 and the you are going to give your recommendation which i think will be a real recommendation, an honest reflection of your opinion what we should do with respected to the drawdown. so thank you for that commitment. >> general, you and i have obviously had opportunity to work very closely together in your current capacity and i thank you for your leadership. have you done an outstanding job. and i know you are going to continue to do that.
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in your new position here with respect to the special operations command. i'm concerned about i.s.r. and the lack there of as we move forward and it's such an integral part of your command now. having heard from general rodriguez recently that only 11% of his i.s.r. requirements are are being met with after com and he's depending on other commanders. i know you are going to be facing the same situation. we've just gone through the budget of the department of defense recently and one of the requests of the air force was to reduce join star's fleet by 40%. do you think that was a wise decision? >> thank you for the question. i'm not sure i know the details of what went into that decision but to your point, do i think there is a vital need to look at our isr posture and ensure we have all the resources starting
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with our most low density, high demand systems all the way down to systems that support our troops on the ground. there is a need to constantly look at this and if confirmed i look forward to working with the committee and commanders to address that particularly as it effects our special operations forces. >> to you and general campbell, what portion of the 9800 post 2014 troops that have been announced by the president will be made up of special operates -- special forces operates in the c.t. world in offing and also tell us our goal with respect to c.t. operations aimed quadeda a and al affiliates between now and 2016 and how we're going to get there. >> of the 9800, approximately
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2,000 of those are special operations forces. of those 2,000 about half of that, around 980 or so are anticipated to be forces that would be directly supporting the c.t. effort. the current planning we have think has allowed us to ensure we have the right capabilities within that mix to continue to do the operations that we will need to do for general done ford and in the future for general campbell as we continue to do that. that will involve unilateral operations to keep heavy pressure on al qaeda networks and other networks supporting them and allow us to maintain the relationships with our partners we have worked for many years and we are seeing come to full frution and get out and conduct operationses and lead
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and direct operations of their own forces. >> general campbell, anything you want to add? >> icon cur with everything he said. those are the numbers i'm tracking and we will make recommendations as we move forward if we have to adjust those numbers if the mission changes. as we move forward and take a look at past 2014, it's about pakistan and their capacity and afghanistan and their capacity and our government and what we want to get done. i look forward to working with the special forces. we train, advise and assist but the training mission is very important as well. we look forward to working with them there. >> thank you very much. >> good morning gentlemen. thank you for your willing tons serve the country and these three important commands that await you. admiral i want to thank you for taking the time to visit with me
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earlier this week. we talked about north com and how instrumentle it's been in facilitating planning training and coordination between the d.o.d. and other agencies whether federal, locally or state and responding to natural disasters and as you know we've had a number of those in colorado over the last few years. we've had floods and wild fires. and the losses we suffered would have been greater if not for the work done before, during and after those disasters by north com, the national guard active duty units and the forest service and many other officials. i'd like to ask you for your views on these efforts and like your assurance you'll continue to make them a top priority once you are confirmed. >> i have found in my career at soldier sailors, airmans,
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marines, active reverse and from the guard find no greater enjoyment than to help the american people in their time of need. i think the work that the national guard and active have done before your fires and then during the execution and in preparations for anything that might come in the future is outstanding and i'll continue to support that effort. >> thank you for that assurance. i know we've really upgraded the communication that we've seen and yet there is more we can do. and i know we are up to the task. let me turn to north com more broadly in its mission. what do you consider to be the greatest threat to the united states? >> the threat to the united states in my current capacity and then if confirmed at north com, i think the greatest threat we have is the cyber threat to our critical infrastructure, to
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our power grid, to our banking system. that i see is the greatest threat. in the job of north covepl is to handle the physical consequences of that threat. >> i think we can't do enough when it comes to cyber security. let me turn to general votel. as you are aware congress pressed concern with lack of bument request in recent years in light of the budget increases over the past decade. what are your views with respect to the congressional language requiring more detail and meaningful information in its budget justification. >> we should be able to defend our requests and if confirmed i look forward to working with the committee to ensure that they understand what the soft forces
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require and why we need it. >> so you would believe that the congress in providing its oversight rule ought to have the same visibility into funding as provided by the services more generally? >> i absolutely believe they should. >> let's turn to sequestration if we could. it looms. many on this committee are very concerned about it and it goes back into effect in 2016. could you give us your perspectives on the effect of sequestration if it were to take effect again? >> in my current capacity, the effect of sequestration was on readiness. that's the means that it targets, the readiness operations and maintenance accounts out there. it impacts today's readiness. the forces that we're going to fight with tomorrow, most of them we already own.
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when it comes to sequestration, that is our primary concern. if confirmed at north com, it's the readiness of those forces to be able to defend the homeland and respond to civil authorities. will we have the ready work furs in order to make sure, to be able to make those decisions and know those readiness stats. my current job as vice chief, i follow sequestration every single day. continue on the path and it happens as it is right impact will have a great , especially the army. modernization and the readiness. we are trying to pull what we can into the short-term readiness. for the army, the biggest platform is people. we can't come down fast enough
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to meet the numbers and the sequestration goals we have. adon't think we've done particularly good job of articulating the impact of sequestration. general of the area only had to combat teams he felt comfortable deploying. we have since worked very hard on short-term readiness and putting additional moneys we have had at the expense of our modernization accounts as we move forward. today they talked about the impact of sequestration, the drawdowns of the forces. we announced 1100 majors we have to take out. and women are currently serving in afghanistan and could be company commanders. that is hard-hitting. we will see that continue. impact ofers and the
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those captains and what that means for those families, we haven't even started talking for 90 down to 450 and down to 420. sequestration i believe will be disastrous for the army. we will not be able to do the defense and strategic guidance if sequestration continues after 16, sir. i agree with the comments of my colleagues appear. urging readiness and the ability to support the broader plans. i would add two specific things from a soft standpoint. ,ffect to the general-purpose one of the key lessons we have soft worse been that is are hugely dependent on her general-purpose forces for a variety of activities that they conduct and allow us to do.
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if confirmed, it would be something that i really want to look at. the second piece is the impact on our people. we have certainly generated a great amount of experience and leadership over the last 10 to 12 years. i would be very concerned about making sure that we did that very carefully and did not lose the experience that we have developed over the last 10 or 12 years. >> thank you for that very sobering analysis of sequestration. >> i want to thank the witnesses and just a follow-up. we now have the united states army, those serving in afghanistan in combat in danger that are now being notified that they are being involuntarily separated from the united dates army.
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>> that is correct. >> that has to hurt morale. >> absolutely, sir. area of responsibility and the mexican guatemala border, right? >> yes, sir. it does. >> is it your information that neither the government of mexico or the government of guatemala at either the guatemala border or the u.s. border, or doing anything to stem the flow of illegal immigrants into this country? >> i don't have any specifics as to that but in my dealings with their navy, i know they are very concerned about it. thate they doing anything you know of? >> if confirmed, i will get you that answer. >> i think you should know more about it before you come to this committee. would like to have that
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answer quickly. because the facts are stubborn things, they are expediting these people across the guatemalan border and the u.s. mexican border. the evening news can tell you that. we are hearing from inside syria and from outside the area that the equipment that isis was able to get a hold of due to their lightninglike success in iraq is now flowing into serious. we have even seen on the internet, pictures that are now inside syria fighting on of isis. do you have any information on that? i haveclassified level,
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seen some of that reporting that would indicate it is moving across between iraq and syria. that itou would agree a very effective tool if fallen into the hands of isis people who know how to operate and they are not that difficult to operate. >> i would agree with that, senator. we find our free syrian army fighting on two fronts. assad and his barrel bombs and now isis with equipment that they captured in iraq now floating in the serious -- into serio syria. that has had an effect on the morale of the free syrian army? >> i don't have specific
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information about that affect. >> maybe experience shows it could have that effect. >> i do think experience would indicate that, senator. do you know any senior military leader that personally recommended the policy of a complete withdrawal by january of 2017? >> i have not talked to any senior leaders that have recommended a complete withdrawal by 2017. >> i am sure senator graham that spent his active duty in afghanistan will pursue this further, but isn't a serious not only the capabilities that the afghans cannot acquire in the next couple of years such as air evacuation, certainly just ask capabilities, but one of our big concerns should be the total
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disappearance of ct capabilities? is that a concern? it is absolutely a concern and we have a couple of years to work on the gaps that the afghan army and their organization has. continue to have to work with the afghan army. it is very important not only afghanistan,and but for our nation. meetings with both candidates for president, they expressed a want and desire for concerna very deep about a date certain withdrawal as opposed to conditions-based. both said they were concerned , their abilityty parts of afghanistan
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that you're very familiar with. do you think that that concern on their part is legitimate? i believe whoever becomes president would have great concern that any of the coalition forces would continue to provide for them. as i mentioned earlier, i think my job and what my senior leadership and with the committee would expect us to provide continuous updates based on our mission and resources. >> one would hope that the president of the united states would look at the nightmare in iraq today and the ability that we could have had to provide perhapsbility there and reevaluate his decision not for american combat troops but the
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much-needed capabilities of support and counterterrorism that we can provide which they simply do not have. my other question, do you remain deeply concerned about the role that pakistan plays in all of this? support whole capabilities for al qaeda and the taliban that remain there? absolutely. afghanistan, pakistan, you can't separate the two. if confirmed, i will continue to work with the afghan military and the pakistani military to continue to ensure that we can reduce that and we have great cooperation between afghans and pakistanis.
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>> senator king. you know the general vogel, used a phrase that started me that i think was realistic but something that we should take note of, you refer to the former border between syria and iraq. is a factualhat assessment. this committee made a decision in his markup of the national defense act of month or so ago that essentially eliminated the m i-17 support both in terms of purchases of the remaining group of helicopters and also spare parts. we got a letter to weeks ago the characterized this. the loss of that capability would have a catastrophic effect on military campaigns with counterterrorism operations that are dependent on the m i-17. and any loss of operational
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reach would therefore do greater force protection. those are our people that he is talking about. do you agree that this would be a catastrophic blow to the of them to do their job in afghanistan. >> i would agree with the assessment on m i-17 and the impact to carry out their mission and the impact on our own force protection. >> the provision adopted by this committee not only would prohibit the buying of the remaining group but immediately cut off spare parts which would ground the entire fleet. >> i think the estimate is six months to 12 months. >> they would be grounded? >> tom that ineffective. >> you're going to be in charge of north, as we have been
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disgusting. -- discussing. i am concerned about the arctic and you mentioned that we really don't have the infrastructure that we need out there. do you know how many icebreakers the russians have an operation? andomewhere between five seven. >> and we have a 45-year-old coast guard icebreaker. >> that is correct. >> the navy has no icebreaker capacity in the arctic. >> that is correct. >> i think you indicated that you felt it would be important the law andtry to see treaty. has been a long-standing position of the department of defense the joining that commission would be a good idea. to get us on the same footing with the other signatories.
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not relying on the long-standing traditions. this a take on urgency given the opening of the ,rctic to commerce exploitation energy, and all of the other potential areas of conflict? >> it would put us on the same footing as the other signatories of the council. there have been a number of questions about afghanistan and our timeframe there. as i understand it, there was intelligence that indicated i since -- isis was building up its strength. how weakidn't know was the iraqi army would be. i would suggest and i hope you agree that one of your missions is to continually assess the readiness and effectiveness of the nsf because it wasn't isis
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so much as the collapse of the iraqi army that led to the debacle firmly unfolding in iraq. today they do have an assessment process in place to continue to evaluate afghan security forces. they won't have that day to but i agree with you sir. i would like to associate myself with senator mccain's comments. it strikes me that rather than an arbitrary date, it should be based on conditions on the field. >> any military commander would want the flexibility to provide an operational assessment and if that is conditions on the ground, i would agree with that. my leadership and my best military advice based on the mission at hand and the resources i have at that time. continue totime to
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look at the afghan forces and the missions that we have, continuing to upgrade their capability. >> i will not ask you to assess the political situation in afghanistan. but you have any assessment of the ethnic makeup of the nsf in terms of raw support in the populous? one of the problems we are seeing is the exclusion of the sunnis and the kurds from both the government and most of the defense forces. potentially the same mistake being made in afghanistan, or not? composition you the , but i don't have that here. my gut tells me it follows part of the pattern of the country be 40%so will probably passed and i can get those for you. i know it is a great concern to make sure the nsf continues to
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, for lack of a better word, a political and continued to have the best interests of the country at hand. seen, from what i have that is exactly what they are seeing. knowrship is key and i that they have made great strides. is a very important all the keep our eye on because if the government left in place isn't broadly represented as a country, if we have learned anything, it is that is a crucial element in the stability of the country that we leave behind. significantke advantage of the capabilities the operations forces have without exhausting them? icier forces particularly important in the future. general dempsey used the term
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tailored response. i think he was talking about you when he used that term. you saw when you visit some of our locations, we are able to be very effective with a very light touch so what we have to do is look at the situation we are putting our soft forces in and make sure we provide the right capability without over doing it and putting undue pressure on our forces. that is also working with the other department of defense forces and where we can, leveraging the capabilities as well. to ensure we take advantage of all of the capabilities. appears to be a future of unconventional nonstate actor forces, your men and women will be the point of the spear and i commend you for taking this command and look forward to working with you on it.
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>> i want to thank all of you for your willingness to serve and for your leadership and your distinguished service and the sacrifices that you and your families have made for the country and will continue to make. campbell,ask, general i know you served in afghanistan at least two or three chewers there, and iraq as well. as we look at our situation that is happening in iraq right now and obviously the huge security challenges that we have there that are very threatening, not only to us but to the entire region, what can we learn from having the withdrawal that we had in 2011 towards what is happened in iraq as we look forward to our
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continued engagement in afghanistan? >> two times in afghanistan, this will be the third and i think all the veterans would tell you as they watch this unfold, it is disheartening to see that. i'm committed to ensuring that , we continue to do everything we can with the coalition to continue to improve the afghan capability there. so they can stand on their own and i'll continue to provide my assessments as we go forward. we ought to look at the lessons learned from there. the military and all of the services that we do, we critique ourselves and work very hard at after action reviews and look at lessons learned. andill take a look at this apply that to afghanistan. >> i know you have received a
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number of questions, taking over the command in afghanistan, about the ct mission. can you put in perspective what the mission means to your average american in terms of the protection of this country? >> if you want to boil it down -- and untilistic to this in 2011 is that we have not had another 9/11 attack on the homeland. and we shouldn't take that for granted and it is not by happenstance. his vision of great men and women working hard. and the ct piece of that on a daily basis continues to strike after these networks that want to do harm to our country so i believe if you wanted to boil it down, it protects the homeland.
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>> i guess i would ask this question of both you and the general hotel. thinking about the president on may 27 making the announcement the by the end of 2016, presence who will have in afghanistan will be at the embassy in kabul which will be a security component, basically a normal embassy presence. it has been further described by the administration that the number of personnel that will be embassy forhe security there will be in cooperative efforts and 1000 people. you, as in to both of hear the general talk about the numbers on the ct mission in afghanistan that we have now,
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that we will plan to have their you also discussed the importance of it including unilateral operations. on kabul do that based operation only? to we do that with 1000 people? and which part of that thousand people will fulfill this important mission to protect the homeland? would just urge her testimony about how important this is to protect our country. what happens after january of 17? i will start and let general but tell provide his comments. i do not know the number at the end of 2016 but i understand and acknowledge what you said. i have not looked at the composition. years,for the next two
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we will continue to improve the capability of the afghan forces and continue to work with pakistan. it will be a relationship that will help on the ct piece and grow some capability there. as i said, we need some time to give you an assessment of where we will be and we need to put in line that there will be time to improve the capability that is already there that may or may not help us reduce the numbers. numberstalk about exact that would be required, and i can come back to that as i make the assessment. go withoes the mission the numbers i just talk to you about. there's a lot you have to do it in embassy. we don't know if any of those individuals would be designated? i think what we have to continue to do is look at conditions as time progresses and continue to provide our very
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best military judgment and advice on the way forward with that. i think we have some models where we conduct operations and other areas where we do use in embassy-based approach. fairly effectively to continue to provide pressure against our networks. thank maintaining relationships to the degree that we can with our afghan partners in this particular situation is hugely important to continue to support our objectives and i do think that we have to look at a broader regional approach as well. there are certainly pakistan and other people that we have to continue to have relationships with and address our broader ct objectives. thinkyour view, do you that we will be able to accomplish all that we need to accomplish, knowing what you know on the conditions in aghanistan with solely
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?attle-based approach >> i don't think i can answer that question accurately right now. i think we have to look at the conditions and provide our best advice on what it is that we need to sustain. to have to continue to protect the homeland and accomplish our objectives. >> what you both said makes a lot of sense, how we can possibly make the announcement from the administration of exactly how many people are going to be at that embassy and where they are going to be given the importance of the mission protecting our country. we don't even know what the conditions will be at the time. it is really hard to come up
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with a word for it. it is certainly not a military-based decision based on the announcement of our president and i'm glad to hear both of you say that you will have the year with the conditions are on the ground. i hope our president will heed the conditions on the ground so can continue to perform this important mission of protecting our country and ensuring we have this intelligence that has helped us prevent future attacks after 9/11. >> i want to thank all of you and your families for their sacrifice. raven stated suicide rates among special operations forces are hitting record highs. place the preservation of the force and family program to try to help with that. i want to find out is do
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you plan on continuing that? d.c. it as a success? other avenues that can help? >> i absolutely do continue to apply the same level of effort as much as i can on to this particular problem. enter service members in general. i think we are to look at every potential resource that can help us understand the problem and identify ways that we can deal with this for our service members. the numbers are alarming. i think it is our number one focus with respect to preserving the force. also, the things you learn from this program. if you see any of it that you
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say this is been really successful or this might be something transferable. if you could share that with all the other commands, it would be very helpful, i think. follow-up, it is obviously of critical nature that you continue to give us your unvarnished opinion as you see going forward where there might be glitches or problems with what the actual numbers need to , and if the plan is not coming together, let us know. the general has been great. giving us the metrics and knowing where the problems are. following up on that, i know you'll keep an eye on it and let us know, one of the distressing ,hings that happened in iraq the real generals were replaced
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by folks who, through connections or friendship or whatever, wound up in those post and i think it caused significant damage to the iraqi army. we want to make sure the same thing doesn't happen in afghanistan. and if you could continue to let us know as you look at the force getting better and getting worse, the leadership, those kinds of things. i know you'll keep an eye on it and it will be helpful to us because it will tell us if something is starting to go sideways. >> i know they put into place some programs to look hard at the professionalism of the afghan officers. they have their own academy and a non-commissioner officer course that they send folks to. one of the main things is the trust between the military and the people.